Hannah makes flying start to season

Norwich 14-year-old Hannah Talbot has continued her recent winning run in the brand new one-day event season.The eventing season got under way in March and Hannah, a pupil at Norwich High School, scored a victory at the Poplar Park BE (British Eventing) one-day event in Suffolk to start her year in style.

Norwich 14-year-old Hannah Talbot has continued her recent winning run in the brand new one-day event season.

The eventing season got under way in March and Hannah, a pupil at Norwich High School, scored a victory at the Poplar Park BE (British Eventing) one-day event in Suffolk to start her year in style.

She has now added an individual victory at the Inter Schools one day event, also staged at Poplar Park, on her 14hh pony Bram Valley Blue Suede Shoes.

This takes her through to the Inter Schools finals at Merrist Wood College in Surrey this November.


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"Hannah was very pleased with her pony's dressage test - it was incredibly windy but this didn't seem to bother him and he just keeps getting better and better in this phase," said mum Hilary Talbot. "Then he jumped a double clear. He was brilliant in the cross-country, where the course had a difficult section right at the end.

"The second to last fence was the water and you then turned to the last, a spooky fence with the lorry park in sight, and several ponies had problems there."

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Hannah's only dilemma with the pony is that she is in danger of outgrowing him.

"It's a real shame as they get on so well, but we are just thinking of buying a 15-hand horse for her to move on to," added Mrs Talbot.

Fellow Norwich High School pupil Florence Pettifer-Smart, 15, finished eighth in her individual section at the Inter School competition.

Another local rider to make a winning start to the new BE season is King's Lynn-based Sarah Walters.

Sarah headed a Novice section at Poplar Park's BE one-day event on the 16.3hh liver chestnut Matin D'Ete, who she rides for Sudbury's Robert and Avril Lees.

"Matin D'Ete is seven now and I've ridden him from a three-year-old," said Sarah. "This was his second event in 2007. We'd also been to the Isleham one-day event in Cambridgeshire and were leading after dressage and show jumping, but I didn't like the cross-country going, so I took him steadily and picked up some time penalties."

The pair again performed an excellent dressage test at Poplar Park and, with going Sarah described as "perfect", pushed on cross country and came home to win.

"I'll take the horse to the new Houghton Hall one-star CCI three day event in Norfolk this May and then give him a break," Sarah continued.

"If he comes back well afterwards he may do a two-star international in the autumn."

Sarah currently has three horses to ride, including the advanced mare Twist n' Run, and has training from Judy Hancocks and John Adams.

"Twist n' Run has had two runs so far, at Poplar Park and Lincoln, but she's quite wild in dressage at the start of the season," Sarah concluded.

"She's being aimed at the three star Bramham three-day event in June."

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